Headlines and studies on eating disorders often focus on women. But why are eating disorders more common in women than men? Read on to learn more.

Over 30 million people across the United States suffer from eating disorders. In many cases, these disorders can be deadly.

While eating disorders affect both men and women, the number of women affected is substantially higher.

Why is that?

`There are have been a number of scientific studies published on the subject and after pouring over multiple opinions, our team has put together a quick list of 3 core reasons we feel are the most pervasive contributors to the question of “Why are eating disorders more common in females?”

1. Complications Surrounding Self-Esteem

Feeling comfortable in your own skin is a beautiful thing. It allows you to be your best self, it keeps you active in your community, and helps you to nurture your relationships.

Alternatively, if you feel bad about yourself, life can look very bleak.

While self-esteem issues are, again, experienced by both men and women, women struggle with issues more often and for longer periods of time due to the societal pressures they feel to be a certain way.

These pressures generally come in the form of the media and its sexualization and misrepresentation of how women should look. When regular people can’t keep up with “the standard” many try to cut corners by turning to eating disorders.

2. Stress

Eating disorders don’t just form as a means to the end of looking “good”. Often-times people with eating disorders purge or malnourish themselves as a way to cope with stress.

This stress can come from the realization that one will never match up to the “gold standard” of what women should be. It can also come from other non-aesthetic places such as relationship trouble, school issues, and more.

Stress affects women differently than it affects men and that difference can have dire consequences for females when it comes to their relationship with food.

3. Cultural/Family Pressures

Many cultures push the media narrative of what women should be. In Hispanic cultures, for example, many view a boy who is overweight as healthy and a girl that is overweight as ugly.

This double standard in conjunction with societal pressures often leads females to feel guilty about the food they eat. On the flip side men typically feel empowered by eating, sometimes even in excess.

Many people in affected cultural communities have found family to be one of the largest contributors to their personal “Why are eating disorders more common in females?” questions. Some will even go on to seek eating disorder treatment to help reprogram their upbringing and come to terms with what it really means to be healthy.

Wrapping Up Why Are Eating Disorders More Common in Females

The question of “Why are eating disorders more common in females?” has been debated by scientists, activists, and community leaders for years. In our opinion, the three reasons above are at the center of million’s struggle with eating.

If you’ve developed unhealthy eating habits and are seeking help, find a local treatment center and start your journey towards living your healthiest life.

For more information on eating disorders and on other things that affect women, read more content on Women Triangle today.